The flow of migrant children arriving in the UK from Calais, as part of a national transfer scheme, has initiated calls for action to effectively safeguard these children, in addition to those already in the UK who need ongoing support.
The Victoria Climbié Foundation UK (VCF) and the University of East London Centre for Social Work Research have established an advisory group for the safeguarding of BME and migrant children in the UK. This will provide a multi-disciplinary approach to identifying and responding to the very specific needs of these children and young people, including unaccompanied minors coming to the UK, to ensure their immediate and longer-term health and wellbeing.
Failure to respond appropriately in the short-term will inevitably lead to longer-term adverse consequences for health and wellbeing of these young people. The advisory group aims to ensure that they receive support and protection provided by services who are working to accepted standards of best practice.
The group has issued a call to action ahead of its official launch event:
'We call upon policy makers, service leaders and practitioners in all sectors to identify and deliver co-ordinated, effective services for migrant children, young people and their families.'
Interested parties are invited to debate this call for action at a parliamentary event on the 18th January that will formally launch the advisory group ahead of a government review into the treatment of child migrants that is due in May 2017. Sir Keir Starmer QC, MP for Holborn & St Pancras and Shadow ‘Brexit’ Minister will be the parliamentary host for this event. You can find out more or register to attend here.